Research Scientist

Portland, OR, US
Oct 10, 2020

Research Scientist
Center for School and Student Progress

About this role...

Researchers in the Center for School and Student Progress are committed to pursuing a research agenda that advances the goals and mission of the Center and NWEA, and most importantly, has direct and practical relevance for schools and students. Center researchers are also committed to working directly with educators in the application of student testing data to myriad questions of policy and practice. The Center is eclectic - p art not-for-profit, part academia, part think tank , and the background, skillsets, and interests of the Center's researchers are varying and wide-ranging . However, all of the researchers in the Center share a common desire to support NWEA's mission of partnering to help all kids learn.

In this Research Scientist role you will have the opportunity to pursue a research agenda that advances organizational and team goals, leverages data from NWEA tests and products, is relevant to both academic and school/practitioner audiences , and contributes to improved outcomes for students and schools . A significant portion of your agenda can be built through the establishment of collaborative research practice partnerships with NWEA partner school systems across the country , with a goal of dissemination and promotion of research findings across an array of media , including publications targeted at both academic and practitioner audiences.

At the same time , in this role you will also work to support school systems in the analysis and application of testing data to policy and programmatic decision, provide consultation and expertise to NWEA partners, and support school systems in their unique and varying research needs. This includes, but is not limited to , p resentations to NWEA partner schools on research findings, support for RFPs, technical consultation, data reporting/visualization, support around NWEA products and offerings, development & improvement of NWEA products, etc.

The ideal Research Scientist candidate will want to apply their interests and skillsets to work in each of these key areas, with flexibility around the balance of work and primary areas of focus. This position is available for remote work. Exceptional candidates with a demonstrated track record of success may be considered for a Senior Research Scientist level position on a case-by-case basis.

Your next challenge could include ...

  • Work ing with the Center to develop a research agenda that is aligned with and complements the Center's and NWEA's r esearch a genda and development roadmap
  • Perform ing research with school systems to enhance the application and use of assessment data in the field
  • Leading and collaborating on the development and dissemination of technical reports , peer-reviewed articles, and other publications and products
  • Providing field support to NWEA partners around the application of testing data to inform policy and programmatic decisions
  • Present ing on research findings, assessment topics, and testing related issues to a wide variety of external audiences
  • Work ing across internal NWEA teams to design new reports , data visualizations, and/or innovations to NWEA assessments/products
  • Perform ing efficacy research on NWEA products and services for schools
  • Perform ing other duties as assigned to ensure the success of the Center and the organization

Traits for success...

  • Strong quantitative or mixed methods training that can be applied to the candidate's research agenda and work activities.
  • Background/experience in measurement and assessment; familiarity with NWEA assessments is a plus.
  • Ability to work collaboratively in a team environment.
  • Interest in collaborating on applied research in which success is measured by your contribution to the schools NWEA serves, in addition to organizational objectives and traditional academic criteria.
  • Ability and experience design ing and implement ing research studies conducted in collaboration with school systems.
  • Demonstrated proficiency with statistical software (SAS, SPSS, R, Stata, or similar programs) ; familiarity with data visualization software (Tableau, Power BI) is a plus .
  • Demonstrated ability to analyze large data sets in an efficient manner , and interest in using large datasets to advance your personal and organizational research agenda s .
  • Strong English writing ability, and experience writ ing technical and non-technical reports and publications for technical and general audiences.
  • Experience in communicating with audiences through multiple media including academic journals, conventional media, and social media.
  • Ability to explain , through presentations and writing, complex measurement and statistical concepts to a wide variety of audiences, including teachers and school/district administrators
  • A bility to adapt research skills and approaches in a flexible and responsive manner to organizational needs.

Education and experience

  • Ph.D. in educational research, assessment, psychology, sociology, economics, or related field with prior research work focused on practical questions related to education policy, teaching and learning, and/or education assessment . Applicants in the process of completing their Ph.D. are encouraged to apply.
  • E xperience with assessment or educational testing.
  • Experience working as an educator or administrator in K-12 school systems, or as a researcher working in direct collaboration with school systems.
  • Experience developing practical solutions to applied education problems

About us...
NWEA® is a research-based, not-for-profit organization that supports students and educators worldwide by creating assessment solutions that precisely measure growth and proficiency-and provide insights to help tailor instruction. For 40 years, NWEA has developed innovative pre-K-12 assessments, including our flagship interim assessment, MAP® Growth™; our progress monitoring and skills mastery tool, MAP® Skills™; and our reading fluency and comprehension assessment, MAP® Reading Fluency™. Educators trust our professional learning offerings to accelerate student learning and our research to support assessment validity and data interpretation. Our tools are trusted by educators in more than 9,500 schools, districts, and education agencies in 145 countries .

What we can offer you....
At NWEA w e not only offer a competitive base salary , we offer a 15% contribution of eligible employees' base salary to a defined contribution 403(b) retirement savings plan; c areer development opportunities; an awesome work culture and environment; we also offer industry leading benefits and perks that are focused on supporting our employees' holistic wellbeing. To learn more about what we can offer more, click here.

NWEA strives to make diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility (DEIA) practices the center of our work. Our organization's mission, Partnering to Help All Kids Learn, is the foundation for our DEIA commitment as we work to reflect, value, and support the educators, students, colleagues, and communities we serve. We seek to empower and engage all stakeholders in the research, services, solutions and products we provide, our organizational culture, and the partnerships we establish with schools, districts, states, and countries.
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NWEA is an equal opportunity employer. Qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability or protected veteran status. For our EEO Policy Statement, please visit our website. If you'd like more information on your EEO rights under the law, please visit the EEOC website